Vintage flowers

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Happy Hallowe'en

Happy Hallowe'en and Samhain, all!

Today the BF and I celebrated our first "real" Hallowe'en together: costumes, jack-o-lanterns, and handing out candy. We tried to do this last year, but it was a very last minute affair in which we ended up carving a butternut squash and tossing candy off our balcony at random passers-by. This year we bought our pumpkins in advance, carved them on Monday night, left them outside where they froze, had to use a hairdryer to thaw out the tops so I could get the lids off to light them, and went over to a friends house that gets kids trick-or-treating. It's a true Canadian Hallowe'en! (not really. I've never seen it this cold on a Hallowe'en before)

I hope you all had a wonderful night, and a very safe and blessed evening. Now I must run as the BF and I must have a very serious discussion about the Disney buyout of Lucasfilm, and the future of Star Wars. Serious business, folks!

Saturday, October 20, 2012

DIY Deoderant

It's a dark and snowy day here in the mountains, which means it's a perfect time for another DIY personal care recipe!

Deodorant seems to be the first product most people think about when considering going "au naturel" with their personal care routine. Most of these thoughts end up somewhere in the vincinity of an un-shaved armpit, a need to forgo the offending drugstore stick,  and a very "naturel" odour emanating from your person. Needless to say, no one really wants to run that risk.

I have tried several store-bought deodorants with success, my two favourites being Rocky Mountain Soap Company's Liquid Crystal Deodorant, and Weleda's spray-on Sage deodorant. However, it does always make me cringe a little to pay around $10 for a bottle of deoderant (granted, the Rocky Mountain Soap one lasts me for at least a year) so I decided to try making my own.

This recipe is from Gill Deacon's fabulous book "There's Lead in you Lipstick."

Creamy Coconut Deoderant

*1/4 cup baking soda
*1/4 cup cornstarch
*10 - 20 drops lavender oil (can substitute tea tree oil for a less girly scent, but test it on your skin first to make sure you don't get a rash!)
*2 Tbsp coconut oil

Step 1: Mix together to form a stiff paste.
Note: Do this in a microwaveable bowl. Coconut oil is a solid at room temperature and doesn't mix well. I found the best way was to measure out the oil as a solid, put it in with your other ingredients, and then nuke it in the microwave for a few seconds to melt the oil. When we did this in my eco-care workshop, those who melted the oil first and then measured it out did not get the right consistency in the end - it was all crumbly.
My original attempts with a stainless steel bowl

Step 2: Pack into an old deodorant stick container and apply a thin layer to underarm.
Note: allow the coconut oil to re-solidify before you apply, wait a few hours.

Lacking an old deodorant stick, I re-used a Rocky Mountain Soap body butter container, as well as another empty face cream container I had saved.

Verdict?  AWESOME. This is actually the best natural deodorant I have ever used. It is even more effective than the other two I mentioned above. And it's cheap as chips: $2.52 for the whole batch. The most expensive part of it was the lavender essential oil - $16.49 for a 12ml bottle (for those wondering, 20 drops = 1 ml). Now, this is not the deodorant to wear with your little black dress, it does leave white marks, but this is great for everyday wear and even survived my Friday lunchtime spin-and-muscle-pump class at the gym.

Oh, and a word to the wise: wear an apron when you're doing this. That cornstarch gets EVERYWHERE.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012


I just re-read my last post and felt my anxiety level go through the roof. I didn't think I was that stressed, to be honest.

It reminded me of Mrs. B's Gratitude post from a couple of weeks back, so I thought I'd try listing the things I'm grateful for in a bid to focus on more positive things.

1. I live in a beautiful place. My life is a postcard.

2. I have a pretty awesome significant other.

3. Said significant other is agreeable to buying a house with me.

4. We can afford to consider buying a place in this beautiful, expensive, postcard town.

5. I have family nearby.

6. My big crazy extended family may be crazy, but that's what makes them all the more awesome, and I love them for it.

7. My sister is coming to visit in a few months!

8. Bellydance troupe :)

9. I am strong and healthy.

10. Dairy-free pumpkin pie. YUMM!

There are many more things to list, but these are the first that come to mind.


Summer's nerves are a little more on edge than usual these days.

First of, the virtual inlaws have moved across the country to settle less than 20 mins away from our place. While it's lovely to have family in the area (especially such nice, grounded people) it's a new demand on our time and social life.

Second, one of my younger cousins(who is stubborn as hell) has been diagnosed with anorexia, and the whole dang extended family is in an uproar while her parents are locking horns with her every day trying to get her into treatment, or, you know, actually eat food.

Third, one of my favorite profs from back in the day passed away last week.

Fourth, the boy and I are house shopping. Nuff said, right? Oh, but then we saw one that we loved, so we made an offer!(gahhhh!) So we're buying a house. But then it was rejected, so we're not. Oh but wait! They changed their minds! We're may be buying a house again! or do we make an offer on another one that we really like as well? BAHHHHHH!

I've been alternating between cleaning everything in sight out of nervous energy and collapsing on the couch with not even enough motivation to get dinner together. My kitchen sinks had better watch out: they are in mortal danger of being scrubbed within an inch of their lives, or bing suffocated under a pile of unwashed dishes.

Thank goodness for dance practice tonight.